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Old 08-16-2008, 07:22 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Read any good books lately?



....this probably wasn't one of them....xoxoxoo
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Old 08-16-2008, 10:52 AM   #2 (permalink)
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playboy..for the articles..honest

oh and by the way, that bed post looks like a knob
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Old 08-16-2008, 12:52 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I just finished Hemingway's "Sun Also Rises". I didn't really like it. It was ok. Not sure why this book is so popular. Has anyone else read it? I would love to discuss it.

I also wrapped up "The Devil's Horsemen". Freakin' fantastic account of the Mongol's frious domination of the known world. It was shocking to read how close Europe came to coming under Mongol conquest if it wasn't for a lucky stroke. I highly recommend this book.

I have started "Clash of Civilizations" and I already love it. Samuel Huntington is a very thoughtful guy.

What about you guys? Anyone read any of these?
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Old 08-16-2008, 02:02 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I just finished the last book of The Dresden Files. I love the series and can't wait for the next book to be released.
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Old 08-18-2008, 08:25 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Excavation by James Rollins

I guess I bought the book for my Sony Reader a while back, but I just read it a couple of weeks ago. It was really entertaining. I doubt I could handle it if it was in movie form, but the book was good. I recommend it if you're into sci-fi.
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Old 08-18-2008, 10:29 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I really need to pick up a good book soon. There has been a lack of reading lately on my part!
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Old 08-18-2008, 10:33 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Finished The Twilight Saga. A decent series, but book four was the best because it had a lot more action than the previous three.

Currently reading The Lunatic Cafe: Anita Blake-Vampire Slayer; This series has a lot more action and gore. If anyone is a fan of vampire books, definitely pick this up.
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Old 08-18-2008, 10:44 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by jorgelito View Post
I just finished Hemingway's "Sun Also Rises". I didn't really like it. It was ok. Not sure why this book is so popular. Has anyone else read it? I would love to discuss it.
Personally, it's one of my favorites. I think the rich characters (Bill = awesome) and insightful allegories for society really got me right off the bat, but the more I read it the more I discovered nuances in Hemingway's writing that I had missed. Considering the current returning vets and the search to find one's place in the world and regain a semblance of stability, I would think that this book would be particularly poignant now.

This may sound odd, but give it another shot in a few years, when you've been in the military for a while. I'm not in the military, of course, but I suspect that it may gain new meaning for you. Just a thought.

Recently a friend of mine has been reading Tolstoy's War and Peace in Russian, and he said that a lot was lost in the more common translation (which I read a few years ago). I'm trying to find a better translation, but it seems there really isn't one that meets with my friend's interpretation. Tolstoy was always a favorite of mine, mostly because his writing challenged me in ways that I still am tenaciously fighting to comprehend, but it troubles me that something may have been lost in the translation. War and Peace is a singular experience, and something I'll remember all my life. I may have to try and learn Russian to really get it and that's unfortunate. So I've been rereading parts that my friend pointed out as possibly having a different meaning.

I'm also rereading Hamlet. I know it's not a book, but it's just so damned good.
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Old 08-18-2008, 11:06 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I recently finished "Atlas Shrugged" by Ayn Rand. Best. Book. EVER.
I don't think I'll ever read another book to top that one, lifechanging. I have just started "The Fountainhead" again for the second time. I had started in two years ago however after my rejection from architecture I stopped out of bitterness. It's much more enjoyable this time around.
Next will be "The Anthem"
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Old 08-18-2008, 09:13 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Willravel View Post
Personally, it's one of my favorites. I think the rich characters (Bill = awesome) and insightful allegories for society really got me right off the bat, but the more I read it the more I discovered nuances in Hemingway's writing that I had missed. Considering the current returning vets and the search to find one's place in the world and regain a semblance of stability, I would think that this book would be particularly poignant now.

This may sound odd, but give it another shot in a few years, when you've been in the military for a while. I'm not in the military, of course, but I suspect that it may gain new meaning for you. Just a thought.

Recently a friend of mine has been reading Tolstoy's War and Peace in Russian, and he said that a lot was lost in the more common translation (which I read a few years ago). I'm trying to find a better translation, but it seems there really isn't one that meets with my friend's interpretation. Tolstoy was always a favorite of mine, mostly because his writing challenged me in ways that I still am tenaciously fighting to comprehend, but it troubles me that something may have been lost in the translation. War and Peace is a singular experience, and something I'll remember all my life. I may have to try and learn Russian to really get it and that's unfortunate. So I've been rereading parts that my friend pointed out as possibly having a different meaning.

I'm also rereading Hamlet. I know it's not a book, but it's just so damned good.
Good tip will, you make some good points. I will re-vist in a few years. I love "Old Man and the Sea", it's one of my favorites. But "Farewell to Arms", "Sun Also Rises" just don't do it for me. For me it was the feeling of nothingness, sort of hedonistic let's-all-feel-sorry-for-ourselves we-have-no-direction-in-life-but-we-drink,-eat,-travel-and-party-all-the-time mentality that really annoyed me. I didn't like any of the characters and felt they were unworthy. No redeeming value at all (to me at least). But Old Man was just awesome. I wonder why there's so much disparity between these books. Maybe age.

Good lord will! Reading War and Peace in Russian! Wow, that is awesome dude. Good for you. Keep it up.

I also want to read some Shakespeare. Maybe I will reread "Taming of the Shrew", one of my favorite Shakespeare.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ghoastgirl1 View Post
I recently finished "Atlas Shrugged" by Ayn Rand. Best. Book. EVER.
I don't think I'll ever read another book to top that one, lifechanging. I have just started "The Fountainhead" again for the second time. I had started in two years ago however after my rejection from architecture I stopped out of bitterness. It's much more enjoyable this time around.
Next will be "The Anthem"
OOh, yeah, I've been meaning to pick some Ayn Rand up to read. Man, my reading list is backed up. What's her style like? Are the books fiction? I didn't know you were rejected from architecture school. Sorry to hear that.
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Old 08-18-2008, 10:08 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Good tip will, you make some good points. I will re-vist in a few years. I love "Old Man and the Sea", it's one of my favorites. But "Farewell to Arms", "Sun Also Rises" just don't do it for me. For me it was the feeling of nothingness, sort of hedonistic let's-all-feel-sorry-for-ourselves we-have-no-direction-in-life-but-we-drink,-eat,-travel-and-party-all-the-time mentality that really annoyed me. I didn't like any of the characters and felt they were unworthy. No redeeming value at all (to me at least). But Old Man was just awesome. I wonder why there's so much disparity between these books. Maybe age.
You need to put Sun Also Rises in context, though, which was my point. War can break even great men (and women). While the physical manifestation of war's effect in Sun Also Rises is totally and completely obvious, the effect on the character's souls is deep and profound. It's like the canvas upon which the story is painted.

A good family friend had his right leg blown off by an IED in Baghdad. When he was recovering, he had to ask himself questions that I can't even fathom. The fundamental and visceral change in his life was something that would completely excuse what may appear as him feeling sorry for himself. Adding to his injury the fact that he had to take lives and saw terrible things... it creates a singular state of mind that you really can't find elsewhere. As for redeeming... you'll have to figure that out for yourself.

And yes, Old Man is probably one of the best pieces of literature ever written.
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ood lord will! Reading War and Peace in Russian! Wow, that is awesome dude. Good for you. Keep it up.
No, I'm not reading it in Russian, my friend is. He's sending me notes on what he sees are differences that were lost in the translation (boy would that make a great Russian Lit dissertation). I'm reading along and studying what the minor differences mean to the overall themes.
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OOh, yeah, I've been meaning to pick some Ayn Rand up to read. Man, my reading list is backed up. What's her style like? Are the books fiction? I didn't know you were rejected from architecture school. Sorry to hear that.
Careful with Rand. She's really popular among many readers, but her philosophy tends to get shat upon by philosophers. It's funny, she touts a certain hyper-rationality but just ends up demonstrating her strong and deep-running biases. And she has a holier-than-thou attitude that makes me look like the most humble, unobtrusive person in the world. Imagine a 70 page speech by a god-like main character that supports her philosophy and is being dragged down by those who don't agree with her... You might want to read up on objectivism before diving into Rand.
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Old 08-19-2008, 09:37 PM   #12 (permalink)
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You need to put Sun Also Rises in context, though, which was my point. War can break even great men (and women). While the physical manifestation of war's effect in Sun Also Rises is totally and completely obvious, the effect on the character's souls is deep and profound. It's like the canvas upon which the story is painted.
Reading another of Hemingway's stories, a short story called "Big Two-Hearted River", actually gives The Sun Also Rises a good contextual background. If you haven't read it, and you consider yourself a Hemingway fan, you ought to.
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Old 08-19-2008, 09:52 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Reading another of Hemingway's stories, a short story called "Big Two-Hearted River", actually gives The Sun Also Rises a good contextual background. If you haven't read it, and you consider yourself a Hemingway fan, you ought to.
Awesome! I'll pick that up tomorrow.

Gracias, senorita.
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Old 08-19-2008, 10:51 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Careful with Rand. She's really popular among many readers, but her philosophy tends to get shat upon by philosophers. It's funny, she touts a certain hyper-rationality but just ends up demonstrating her strong and deep-running biases. And she has a holier-than-thou attitude that makes me look like the most humble, unobtrusive person in the world. Imagine a 70 page speech by a god-like main character that supports her philosophy and is being dragged down by those who don't agree with her... You might want to read up on objectivism before diving into Rand.
Don't worry, I am an experienced reader and have critical analysis reading skills. But thank you.
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Old 08-20-2008, 01:22 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Finished The Twilight Saga. A decent series, but book four was the best because it had a lot more action than the previous three.

Currently reading The Lunatic Cafe: Anita Blake-Vampire Slayer; This series has a lot more action and gore. If anyone is a fan of vampire books, definitely pick this up.
The Anita Blake series is wonderful-up to a point. After probably the 6th or 7th in the series, it degenerates into how many people she can screw per chapter. Good if you like that (certainly titillating at times), but I fell in love with the whole idea of investigating paranormal crime scenes as a legit, well-known occurrence.

I just re-read Songs of Distant Earth, by Arthur C. Clarke (better known for his 2001 Space Odyssey). Beautiful, evocative, hopeful yet mournful, it is one of my absolute favorites.
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Old 08-20-2008, 10:31 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Don't worry, I am an experienced reader and have critical analysis reading skills. But thank you.
Bravo. Don't let someone mislead you, Rand is an excellent writer and her stories are fabulous.
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Old 08-20-2008, 10:40 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Awesome! I'll pick that up tomorrow.

Gracias, senorita.
I should note it's one of my favorites. It's the story that turned me on to Hemingway.
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Old 08-20-2008, 10:59 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Bravo. Don't let someone mislead you, Rand is an excellent writer and her stories are fabulous.
I wasn't saying she was a bad writer. Reactions to her work tend to be extreme. Either people absolutely adore Rand or can't stand her. Personally, I don't like her writing, but that's just my opinion.
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Old 08-20-2008, 11:07 AM   #19 (permalink)
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RANT by Chuck Palahniuk.

Entire story is told in the form of an oral history gathered from the people related to the protagonist.

As far as subversive mind-fuck reads go, I'll rate this as one of my favourite! It's only the second of Palahniuk's books that I've read, but it betters Fight Club in some respects, simply because it attempts much more...
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Old 08-21-2008, 05:47 AM   #20 (permalink)
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I haven't ready any good books lately.... I've unfortunately read the whole Dark Tower series by Stephen King. I used to be a fan, but he's accomplished a feat I never thought possible. He's crapped on every story I've ever read by him, and now I no longer enjoy his old stuff. I would have never tired of The Stand, It, Salem's Lot, or The Talisman, but now those universes have collapsed in on themselves and are no longer open to me. Waahhhh, heh

Does anyone know of any good new horror authors? There doesn't seem to be a lot out there lately, and the quality is pretty thin.

On a side note I've read some Hemingway, and all I got from the stories was a feeling of impotence and entitlement. Maybe I need to reread, it has been a few years. A certain amount of ageing is required sometimes..... It is probably about time to read something challenging again, anyway. I've been reading mostly fluff.
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Old 08-21-2008, 06:10 AM   #21 (permalink)
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RANT by Chuck Palahniuk.

Entire story is told in the form of an oral history gathered from the people related to the protagonist.

As far as subversive mind-fuck reads go, I'll rate this as one of my favourite! It's only the second of Palahniuk's books that I've read, but it betters Fight Club in some respects, simply because it attempts much more...
Good call; Rant, Choke, Fight Club, and Diary are all solid Palahniuk novels. If you have the stomach, read Haunted; it was the first time in my life reading a story made me almost vomit.

Just reread Hey Nostradamus! by Douglas Coupland. It tells the story of four people affected by a school tragedy. It is excellent.

I'm in the middle of my favorite novel ever written ever, as well as my second favorite collection of short storys: High Fidelity by Nick Hornby and The Informers by Brett Easton Ellis respectively.

High Fidelity is to 20 something men who are the 90's breed of introspective that Catcher In The Rye was to 16-20 somethings who were of the same ilk. It is the story of twenty something Rob's backlash in response to his break up with Laura. He rediscovers his life by re-examining the break ups that changed his life.
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Old 08-21-2008, 06:29 AM   #22 (permalink)
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"Confederacy of Dunces" I picked up after hearing that it was a good beach book. It's simply amazing. John Kennedy Toole's gift for dialect writing is wonderful. The story about the book is even amazing. Toole committed suicide and his mother spent the next ten years trying to get his book published.

I think I'm a little bit odd in my reaction to Ayn Rand. I like her books, but I think her philosophies about government are a bit odd.

Little known trivia: Allen Greenspan was madly in love with her when he was a young man. Hard to imagine either of those two being emotional about anything.
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Old 08-21-2008, 07:01 AM   #23 (permalink)
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I'm on a Chuck Palahniuk tear. Fight Club, Choke, Stranger Than Fiction (Essays), and now Snuff. Next, after this, will be Haunted. I like his style. He wrote alot about how he puts together a book in Stranger Than Fiction, and I recognize a lot of his methods in Snuff and Choke. As an aspiring writer, this is more research than entertainment.

I tried to get into Truman Capote's In Cold Blood, but it is just TOO deliberate for me. Everyone keeps saying how amazing it is, but if I pick up that book again and something doesn't happen in the next 10 pages, I'm going to burn it.
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Old 08-21-2008, 07:30 AM   #24 (permalink)
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I'm not trying to tell the mods how to do their jobs, but why do we have a Book Club thread stickied in this forum if we're then going to have other "what are you reading" threads?
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Old 08-21-2008, 09:24 PM   #25 (permalink)
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Just finished The Dance of Time by Eric Flint & David Drake. Much better than the last book but not the best in the series.

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The Anita Blake series is wonderful-up to a point. After probably the 6th or 7th in the series, it degenerates into how many people she can screw per chapter. Good if you like that (certainly titillating at times), but I fell in love with the whole idea of investigating paranormal crime scenes as a legit, well-known occurrence.
Is Hamilton's latest book (Blood Noir) worth buying?
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Old 08-22-2008, 07:10 PM   #26 (permalink)
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For those into Chuck Palahniuk I recommend Invisible Monsters and Survivor (a personal favorite).
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Old 08-22-2008, 08:37 PM   #27 (permalink)
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The Raw Shark Texts, by Steven Hall. It was a great book. Starts out with dude waking up, not knowing who his or where he is, but he finds a note from the "First Eric Sanderson."

If you read "Neverwhere" the ride is somewhat similar, meaning, you're in world part of you knows to be almost believable.

The website is pretty cool, too: raw shark texts
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Old 08-22-2008, 08:48 PM   #28 (permalink)
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Currently I'm working on Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh. I love it.
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Old 08-25-2008, 10:08 AM   #29 (permalink)
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I just finished Snuff. I've got mixed feelings. I enjoyed the piece, but felt that it could have been a little more engaging. I found myself laughing at the absurdity, but rarely caring about the drama. There are twists and revelations and overtures, but it still manages to feel methodical.
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Old 08-25-2008, 11:22 AM   #30 (permalink)
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Oh, just remembered something else...

Small Favor, by Jim Butcher.

Latest in the Dresden Files series of books; for those of you who haven't heard of the books (or haven't seen the awful TV series adaptation), imagine Harry Potter grown up, living in a dingy apartment, struggling to make ends meet as a supernatural private eye.

2 of the best things in the world: Hard-boiled detective fiction, and dudes throwing fireballs
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Old 08-25-2008, 12:12 PM   #31 (permalink)
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Think Oceans 11 meets fantasy.

I enjoyed both it, and its sequel.

Fun reads to be sure.
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Old 08-25-2008, 12:34 PM   #32 (permalink)
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I just finished "Calculating God" by Robert J Sawyer, best known for the Neanderthal Parallax and The Terminal Experiment. Normally I absolutely adore his writing. Common themes are atheism, rationalism and logic, and social change. If I ever was able to hone my writing skills in science fiction, I hope my works would read like his.

Calculating God, however, was painful to read. It starts out as a brilliant science fiction, but suddenly takes a turn for the fantasy with the introduction of theistic alien species and even a special guest star: god.

Check out this quote:
Quote:
A common sense interpretation of the facts suggests that a superintellect has monkeyed with physics, as well as with chemistry and biology, and that there are no blind forces worth speaking about in nature.
Calculating God - Google Book Search

That sounds like.... intelligent design!? My hope was that this theme was intended as satire, but really his timing couldn't have been worse. That point is central to the plot and ruined the whole work for me.
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Old 08-25-2008, 12:43 PM   #33 (permalink)
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Sawyer lives pretty near to me in Toronto. I started to rad the Neanderthal series... Maybe I'll checkout this one.
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Old 08-25-2008, 07:34 PM   #34 (permalink)
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I just finished Snuff. I've got mixed feelings. I enjoyed the piece, but felt that it could have been a little more engaging. I found myself laughing at the absurdity, but rarely caring about the drama. There are twists and revelations and overtures, but it still manages to feel methodical.
I didn't like Snuff all that much either. It was okay, just not great.
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Old 08-26-2008, 12:58 PM   #35 (permalink)
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Snuff was the first Chuck book where I guessed the "twist" way before it happened. Usually he uses extreme/absurd situations to reveal an underlying moral "truth", but I didn't feel it was very strong in this book.
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Old 08-30-2008, 01:44 AM   #36 (permalink)
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such a great mind fuck as well as a truly exhilarating story
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Old 09-04-2008, 12:03 PM   #37 (permalink)
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house of leaves is awesome! very unique!

I am currently reading "The End of America: A Letter of Warning to a Young Patriot" by Naomi Wolfe. I just read "The Good Earth" by Pearl S. Buck.
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Old 09-04-2008, 01:08 PM   #38 (permalink)
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Finished The Twilight Saga. A decent series, but book four was the best because it had a lot more action than the previous three.

Currently reading The Lunatic Cafe: Anita Blake-Vampire Slayer; This series has a lot more action and gore. If anyone is a fan of vampire books, definitely pick this up.
Thanks for the heads up. I am reading Twilight now and am on the second book. So far I really like it.
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Old 09-05-2008, 07:14 AM   #39 (permalink)
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I've read the first 3 Harry Potter books. My impression so far is this: Good stories, ham-fisted storytelling. I'm really hoping the next few break out of the mold a little bit here.
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Old 09-05-2008, 07:42 PM   #40 (permalink)
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I'm about halfway through Herman Wouk's War And Remembrance. I wonder just how many people actually read the entire book.
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